Canada and its allies sent a stern message to Iran on Thursday: get ready to pay the families those who died on board the Ukrainian airliner it shot down, and don’t try to block any meaningful criminal prosecution of those responsible.
Those demands were among the five elements in the agreement that emerged from the meeting Canada hosted in London Thursday with representatives from Britain, Sweden, Afghanistan and Ukraine — countries that lost citizens in the crash of Ukraine International Airlines flight PS752.
“We are judging Iran every day, demand by demand,” Foreign Affairs Minister Francois-Philippe Champagne said after a meeting of ministers.
The newly formed group of Iran watchers will have to remain vigilant for months, if not years, Champagne said.
That was underscored by the presence of Dutch Foreign Minister Stef Blok. He joined talks to provide a briefing the experience of the Netherlands in leading its five-year-long probe of the deadly shootdown of Malaysia Airlines flight MH17 over Ukraine, which investigators have blamed on Russia. That crash killed 298 people and the majority of them were from the Netherlands.
The countries expect Iran to deal with them on providing compensation to the families of victims, and ensuring a transparent investigation into the downing of the aircraft.
“The international community is watching. I think that we took as a first positive step the fact that Iran admitted full responsibility,” Champagne said, flanked by his fellow foreign ministers and their flags.
“From that admission, obviously, flows consequences and we expect and demand a full co-operation from the Iranian authorities in every step of consular services, identification of remains, investigation and prosecution of those responsible.”
The group also called on Iran to respect families’ wishes on repatriating the remains of the 176 people killed when the plane came down, full access for consular officials and investigators, and an independent and credible criminal investigation into last week’s crash.
Everyone on board was killed when one, though perhaps two, Iranian surface-to-air missiles hit the Ukrainian airliner. Iran lost 82 nationals in the crash, while 57 Canadians were killed. The Canadian Press has independently confirmed at least 89 victims with ties to Canada, many of them students and professors returning after spending the December break visiting relatives in Iran.
After denying for days that it shot down the passenger plane, Iran’s leaders apologized and admitted what they said was a mistake.
Champagne said further investigation was warranted to “clarify who would have committed that, how it was committed, because we know the cause but obviously there’s a lot of questions.”
Behind closed doors, the ministers also discussed the tools they might need to use to force Iran to co-operate with them if that becomes necessary. Those include legal actions in European courts and possible resolutions against Iran at the United Nations Security Council, said a senior Canadian government official, speaking on the condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the situation.
The Thursday gathering at Canada House on London’s Trafalgar Square opened with a solemn, wordless ceremony.
Champagne led the four ministers down a grand staircase, past flags from their countries to a podium where each lit one candle in quiet succession. The ministers then stood shoulder to shoulder behind the flickering flames to lead a moment of silence.
Since the crash, Canada has had to rely on allies because it severed formal diplomatic relations with Iran in 2012.
“Coming at these issues with this group makes sense,” said Dennis Horak, the retired diplomat who was Canada’s last envoy in Tehran when its embassy was shuttered.
“There is strength in numbers, especially for Canada which doesn’t have diplomatic ties and had acrimonious relations with Iran even when we did.”
But Horak said the group likely faces stalling tactics from Iran on compensation, and only a cursory commitment to bringing those at fault to justice after its announcement this week of arrests of an unknown number of people on unspecified charges.
“Iran will say they have acknowledged their mistake and will hold those responsible to account through their courts in order to deflect criticism and basically say to the world ‘we got this’ without being transparent,” he said.
Champagne said Canada wants its two experts with the Transportation Safety Board who are now in Tehran to be part of the investigation when the plane’s flight recorders, or black boxes, are examined.
They could contain crucial flight data and cockpit recordings, and have been a bone of contention since the crash.
Shortly after the crash, a senior Iranian aviation official said the country would not turn over the black boxes from the 3 1/2-year-old Boeing 737-800 to the American company.
This report by The Canadian Press was first published Jan. 16, 2020.
Restrictions lifted in Quebec despite Canada's top doctors warning of a fourth wave – CTV News Montreal
At a minute past midnight Sunday, more COVID-19 restrictions in Quebec were lifted including how late bars and restaurants could serve alcohol and festival capacities.
Bars and restaurants are now permitted to serve alcohol until 1 a.m. with closing time pushed to 2 a.m.
Ten people or three private residences can share a table and tables must remain two metres apart indoors when there are no partitions between them. Outdoor terrasses can seat 20 per table, and those tables must be a metre apart.
In indoor auditoriums and stadiums, the capacity is now 7,500 people with assigned seating (with one empty seat between people from different households), with sections divided into a maximum of 250 people per section. Mask-wearing is still mandatory inside while not seated.
For outdoor festivals, 15,000 people are now permitted to attend in pre-assigned seats or standing in 500-people sections. Two-metre distancing is required, and mask-wearing is recommended by public health when people are circulating. A monitor is required to keep an eye on all participants. For complete rules on festivals and events, visit the Quebec public health site.
The sports community was quick to respond.
In soccer, CF Montreal announced that it will be able to receive fans in all sections of Saputo Stadium (in compliance with physical distance rules) as of next Wednesday, Aug. 4, during its game against Atlanta United.
The CFL’s Montreal Alouettes play its first game in Montreal on Aug. 27 against the Hamilton Tiger Cats.
The team said it was “extremely happy” with the new relaxations.
The Alouettes announced that individual tickets will be sold to the general public starting Monday morning.
Tennis Canada said that the National Bank Open, which will be held from Aug. 7 to 15 at the IGA Stadium, is maintaining a maximum capacity of 5,000 spectators per match in Montreal. The centre court can usually accommodate up to 12,000 people.
Canada’s Chief Public Health Officer, Dr. Theresa Tam, released modelling on Friday that indicates cases are beginning to rise as a result of the more contagious Delta variant, but there is still time to flatten the curve.
On Friday, Quebec reported 78 more Delta cases of the 125 new COVID-19 cases. Quebec’s total number of Delta cases (356), is at the low end of Canada’s overall numbers (9,841). Ontario leads the way with 4,565 total, followed by Alberta (2,004) and BC (1,664).
Epidemiologist Dr. Christopher Labos said the number one way to protect against a Delta-driven fourth wave of COVID-19 is to convince Quebecers who have yet to get a vaccine to do so immediately.
“If you’re not vaccinated, keep your distance from other people,” he said. “The problem with COVID is not just that it’s infectious, but that a significant portion of the people who get it get seriously ill and end up in hospital.”
— with files from The Canadian Press.
Immigration: Canada expands non-Canadians’ rights to information and privacy requests – Canada Immigration News
Earlier this month, Canada announced a major change to its rules for access to information and privacy (ATIP) in the Canada Gazette.
The change is simple, but the impacts are profound. The Canadian government is going to allow anyone to make an ATIP request under the Privacy Act. This new policy will bring Canada into line with global standards on ATIP. It will also vastly expand the rights of non-Canadians.
Laws such as the Privacy Act allow people to make ATIP requests to the federal government. Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) is a federal agency, so it is subject to the Privacy Act.
Currently, there are limitations on who can make an ATIP request through the Privacy Act. One of the items limits the right of access to two groups:
- Canadian citizens and permanent residents, inside or outside of Canada; and
- any entity (person or business) inside Canada, whether a citizen or not.
This limitation means that non-Canadians who are outside of Canada cannot make requests under the Privacy Act. There is a way to get around this rule. An ineligible person can get someone who is eligible to make a request on their behalf. However, this process can be expensive and time-consuming.
Having the ability to make an ATIP request to IRCC can be very helpful. For example, an ATIP request can allow a person to access their Global Case Management System (GCMS) notes. These are the detailed records of a person’s immigration case. They will explain IRCC staff’s thinking and decision-making. They can help a person understand why IRCC has decided the way it has. This knowledge, in turn, can also help the person challenge the IRCC decision. For example, the person could show the officer ignored or mis-interpreted something.
IRCC is a popular target for ATIP requests. In fact, there are more ATIP requests for IRCC than there are for any other federal government department combined.
Because this change is so important, IRCC expects it will need time to make sure it goes smoothly. For example, IRCC will have to change forms and processes. It will also likely have to deal with a much greater number of requests. For this reason, the government is delaying when the new rule takes effect. Per the Canada Gazette, the Canadian government changed the Extension Order on July 14, 2021. However, the Gazette also noted that the change takes effect on its first anniversary. This means that on July 14, 2022, the new rule will come into force.
The new rule is a major step forward for non-Canadians. There is a delay in effect. This delay, itself, is because the change is so large and important.
© CIC News All Rights Reserved. Visit CanadaVisa.com to discover your Canadian immigration options.
While you were sleeping: How Canada performed at Tokyo Olympics Friday, Saturday – Global News
Canada won its latest swimming medal at the Tokyo Olympics Saturday, while athletes managed to advance to future rounds in multiple track and field events.
Here’s what you may have missed from the day’s events.
Kylie Masse won her second silver medal of the Tokyo Games in the women’s 200-metre backstroke, adding to her medal in the 100-metre backstroke.
Taylor Ruck, also swimming for Canada in the backstroke, managed a sixth-place finish.
On the men’s side, Brent Hayden tied for fourth in the 50-metre freestyle semifinal with Russia’s Kliment Kolesnikov — and tied his personal best time — but it wasn’t enough to the final.
Sage Watson made it through to Monday’s semifinal of the women’s 400-metre hurdles after finishing fourth in her heat. Noelle Montcalm wasn’t so lucky, placing sixth, although she managed a new season best performance.
Marco Arop won his heat in the men’s 800-metres, sending him to the semifinals on Sunday. Brandon McBride won’t join him after finishing sixth in his heat.
Defending bronze medal winner Andre De Grasse finished first in his 100-metre heat, clocking a season best time of 9.91 to qualify for the semifinals.
Fellow Canadians Gavin Smellie and Bismark Boateng failed to qualify for the semifinal, however, after both finishing eighth in their respective heats.
Meanwhile, sprinters Crystal Emmanuel and Khamica Bingham were unable to qualify for the women’s 100-metre final. Bingham finished fifth with a time of 11.22 in the first semi-final, while Emmanuel came in sixth place in the second semi-final, with a time of 11.21.
Jennifer Abel finished third in the women’s three-metre springboard semifinal, guaranteeing her a spot in the final on Sunday. Abel will be seeking her first medal in the event after finishing fourth at the 2016 Games in Rio.
Pamela Ware, who had been ranking just behind Abel in the first four rounds of the semifinal, fell to 18th place after failing her fifth dive and did not qualify for the final.
The women’s team defeated Kenya 24-10 in its final match of the Games, securing a ninth-place finish in the overall rankings.
Women leading Team Canada at Tokyo Olympics
The team of Amelie Kretz, Matthew Sharpe, Joanna Brown and Alexis Lepage managed a 15th-place finish in the mixed triathlon, nearly three-and-a-half minutes behind gold medallists Great Britain.
Mackenzie Hughes and Corey Conners both bumped themselves up to a tied 17th-place finish after the third round of play, which started for both men at the 10th hole.
Hughes finished with a score of 65, while Conners scored 66.
Tom Ramshaw managed a second-place finish in the day’s first race of the men’s one-person heavyweight finn dinghy event, later placing ninth in the second race. He’ll sail his final two races on Sunday.
The men’s 49er skiff team of William Jones and Evan DePaul placed 13th in their first race of the day, 18th in the second and PLACE in the third, ending their run at the Games.
Alexandra Ten Hove and Mariah Millen’s final three races in the women’s 49er FX skiff event saw the team place 13h in the first and 17th in the second and third.
Tammara Thibeault lost all five of her rounds in the women’s middleweight quarterfinal to Nouchka Fontijn of the Netherlands, ending her run at the Games.
Crispin Duenas was defeated by Germany’s Florian Unruh 6-2 in the men’s individual elimination round — the last round of play before the quarterfinal.
Colleen Loach and her horse Qorry Blue D’Argouges finished 42nd in third session of the team and individual dressage event.
Broady Robert Santavy finished fourth in the men’s 96-kilogram weight class, narrowly missing out on Canada’s second weightlifting medal after Maude Charron took home gold in the women’s 64-kilogram competition Tuesday.
— with files from Global News’ Saba Aziz
Tokyo Olympics: Canada wins gold medal in women’s eight rowing
© 2021 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.
Donald Trump's political organization builds war chest topping $100 million – CNN
What Activision Blizzard Is Losing, Besides The PR War – Forbes
Market jitters only underscore China’s importance to global economy – Financial Times
Silver investment demand jumped 12% in 2019
Europe kicks off vaccination programs | All media content | DW | 27.12.2020 – Deutsche Welle
Iran anticipates renewed protests amid social media shutdown
Health21 hours ago
Majority of COVID-19 cases at large public events were among vaccinated Americans: CDC study – CTV News
Sports17 hours ago
Olympic viewing guide: Andre De Grasse goes for gold, Penny's last shot – CBC.ca
Health15 hours ago
A look at COVID-19 reopening plans across the country – BradfordToday
Business24 hours ago
Ontario reports more than 200 new COVID-19 cases for third day in a row – CP24 Toronto's Breaking News
Science23 hours ago
Russian lab module docks with space station after 8-day trip – Vancouver Is Awesome
Sports16 hours ago
Andre De Grasse cruises into Olympic 100m semifinal with season-best time – CityNews Toronto
News18 hours ago
How can Canada avoid a fourth wave of COVID-19? Doctors weigh in – CTV News
Art24 hours ago
By Robynblair Talks The Art Of Merchandise And Collaborations – Forbes